Jul 13, 2013

My trip to Hokkaido

It has been already  in the middle of summer during our tour. I haven’t updated my blog more than a month. In Japan, it is very humid, so the news told us to be careful not to suffer from heatstroke every day. The heat is probably getting to my flowers and vegetables in my garden, but anyway they are growing somehow. I will write something about the look of my garden next time. Today, I’m going to tell you about my trip to Hokkaido.

I went on a trip to Hokkaido with my parents and my daughter.  We toured around three beautiful places, Asahikawa and Furano city, as well as the town of Biei.

It was our first time to be at  Haneda Airport.

I was very moved by the breathtaking “Aoiike“
It is a man-made pond located near the town of Biei.
It is becoming popular nationwide since few years ago because of it’s wonderful emerald green water.
Aoiike looks more fantastic and mysterious by the dead trees which stand in the pond and grand mountain chains which serves as the background as well as the emerald green water.

The scene is very fantastic!
The weather was perfect, so the emerald green water appeared vivider.

In Furano city, I thought the flowers of  the Lavenders hadnt yet bloomed at all there because it is said this year that it's bloom would be later than usual.
But unexpectedly, those just started to turn purple.. so we were very  lucky.


We used the “Torokko train(トロッコ電車)" called" Norokko go" , a special train that operates only during summer, going to “Furano Farm" (富良野 ファーム) in Furano city, where there are many lavenders.
The train isn’t having glassed windows and those were opened, so we can enjoy the charming scenery of mountain chain and beautiful hills in Biei and Furano  with a comfortable and cool wind.

Att Lavendar station

In Tomita Farm

This place is “Tomita melon farm”, next to “Tomita farm”.  We liked the big melon statue very much and took some pictures with it. That statue is three times as much as my size.

 We bought two big melon breads there. Those were too much to eat up by myself.

This light –purple-colored soft drink which I bought in “Tomita farm” was unexpectedly delicious.
Guess what?           It’s a Calupisu water with lavender.

Here is a room in a hotel – Hotel La vista -where I stayed on the first day.
The décor and setting in the room were very nice, and we felt relaxed in a cozy and calm atmosphere.
The French dinner was really  delicious.

The appearance of The Hotel La vista. How sweet!

My daughter and I climbed up Mt. Asahidake  in the early morning of the next day
There were still quite a lot of snow there, and it was a little bit difficult to walk.
Thanks to the nice weather and for getting up early, we have enjoyed enough grand mountain scenery at a nearby place.

That day, we also went to Asahiyama Zoo, which is located in the most northern part of Japan.
This zoo is the place which my mother longed for, and I was actually asked by her to plan a private tour for her to look around slowly and in sufficient time.

That zoo has a unique way of showing their animals –  the visitors can observe the animals in their cages from various angles.  It was a weekday as well as a pre-summer holiday of school students, so the popular zoo wasn't so crowded yet.
That’s why it was easy for us to observe the animals.

Especially, a polar bear  was very charming.
His series of lovely actions which is going around a big rock and then shaking his neck a few times was very cute.

A  polar bear’s cute plump butt.

I admired him for a lot of his hospitality to the park visitors.

A capybara looks like taking a bath in a hot spring. Look at his expression. Please pay attention especially to his eye. His relaxing expression unwinded me.

In a water tunnel.

Look how fast it swims!


The fantastic view outside from the room and the look of the room itself of Grand Hotel in Asahikawa city, where we stayed on the second day.

My daughter ate a heaping bowlful of rice with a lot of Ikura-salmon roe.

On the last day of our trip,  before going back home by an airplane,  we visited “The Ainu Museum (アイヌ館)” in Asahikawa city.
The museum is an old-looking building and it’s items are only few, but we had Ainu costumes put on there and were able to take some pictures in front of a traditional Ainu house called “Chise’.

In front of Chise

How do you think of us in vivid Ainu costumes?

Therefore, we have spent fun time there in our own way. Our taxi driver told us that Ainu museum is very dull and you would finish there in about 5 minutes though.   It is really fun to go on a trip, isn’t it?  I am always disappointed by the end of our tour because I feel sad and lonely for ending such a nice time. Anyway, we were very lucky with the wonderful weather during our trip and the fantastic time we spent.

If you have interest in a polar bear in  the Asahiyama Zoo, please click here. You can watch a short video about it.